First week on Walkatjurra Walkabout

Here we are on the 2016 Walkatjurra WalkaBout.

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This year the group consists of about 50 walkers who have travelled from all over the country and world to ‘walk away from uranium’.
We’re also blessed by the presence of traditional owners; Aunty Shirley, Aunty Lizzy, Richard and Sandra Evans, Uncle Glen Cooke, Kado Muir, Vicky, Jeanette and a big group of youth from Leonora who all share their knowledge and stories of the land on which we walk.

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Thanks to the subterranean underground fauna of stygofauna and troglofauna the EPA recommended the proposed uranium mine at Yeelirrie NOT be approved. From the walkers there are many stygofauna happy dances going on around camp and the area has been decorated with “we love stygofauna” stencils. However, it is still very sad that the EPA did not take in to account the wishes of the Traditional Owners and the many other issues.
Spirits are high as we walk along, knowing our time and energy has helped to protect this land and the world from the risks of uranium mining.

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As the sun rises and the sky turns hyper pink over the rich red landscape, the walkers pack their swags and head to camp kitchen for an early breakfast by the fire.
After breakfast, we gather in circle to reunite. Messages are shared, then shoelaces tied and toes wriggle. Flags are held high to share the message from all our hearts and minds. ‘Wanti uranium, leave it in the ground’. Foot before foot we walk together.
The breeze gets us through the heat of the sun. We chat, get to know each other and before long we’ve arrived at our new camp. At camp we split into our organised affinity groups. Sometimes a group will cook, care for the elders, or clean up after a meal. When we’re not walking or taking care of duties, we rest. Rest days involve cloud gazing, clothes washing, diary entries, spoon carving and learning about bush tucker from the locals. The midday heat makes us lazy and slow but were content in the peace this vast country provides.
Like the wind blows the dirt, we’ll be swift out of here soon. Makin’ tracks for the next camp. We’re spreading these words; ‘wanti uranium, leave it in the ground’. Come walk with us through this beautiful country.

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Support us as we stop the destruction of uranium before it starts. ‘wanti uranium, leave it in the ground’.
After celebrating the Yeelirrie decision the last few weeks we were saddened on Monday to hear the Mulga Rocks proposed uranium by Vimy resources has just been recommended for approval by the EPA.
Please lodge an appeal or get involved in the campaign
More info on Mulga Rocks go to http://www.ccwa.org.au/mulga_rocks

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To make a donation to the Walkatjurra Walkabout you can direct deposit in to our Bendigo Bank account

Account Name: Fremantle Anti Nuclear Group
BSB: 633-000
Account Number: 137443347
Reference: Walkabout

About Marcus Atkinson

For over two decades I have been involved in Peace Walks that have covered many different issues. In 2003 I helped organize a 9 month walk from Roxby Downs, South Australia (home to one of the largest uranium mines in the world) to Hiroshima, Japan, (arriving on August 6th.) In 2005 I became a board member of Footprints for Peace and have acted as the International Coordinator in organizing walks through out the world for a Nuclear Free Future.
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